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Weekly PA Environment Digest Newsletter
July 26, 2010
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* Gov. Rendell Anticipates 700 State Worker Layoffs Resulting From Budget Cuts

Gov. Rendell this week said about 700 state workers will have to be furloughed as a result of the cuts to the FY 2010-11 budget, down from 1,000 he anticipated earlier.

* Did You Know You Can Search 6 Years Of Digests On Any Topic?

Did you know you can search nearly 6 years of back issues of the PA Environment Digest on dozens of topics, by county and on any key word you choose. Just click on the search page.

* Senate/House Agenda/Session Schedule

Here are the Senate and House Calendars and Committee meetings showing bills of interest as well as a list of new environmental bills introduced--

* Sen. Baker Opposes Forced Pooling Of Marcellus Shale Natural Gas Rights

Sen. Lisa Baker (R-Luzerne) put out a statement this week saying she will "vigorously oppose" efforts by the natural gas industry to gain the power referred to as “forced pooling.”

* Rendell Urges Senate Committee To Work On Road, Bridge And Transit Funding


* Environmental Synopsis Features Green Roof Technology

The July issue of Environmental Synopsis newsletter published by the Joint Legislative Air and Water Pollution Control and Conservation Committee features an article on green roof technology and its ability to reduce urban heating and improve stormwater management.

* 2010 Lackawaxen River Of The Year Poster Now Available

As part of a continuing focus on the Lackawaxen River, the northeastern Pennsylvania waterway named Commonwealth River of the Year for 2010 by DCNR, commemorative posters now are being offered.

* Reservations Now Open For Port of Pittsburgh-Ohio River Watershed Celebration

You can now make reservations for the 9th Annual Port of Pittsburgh-Ohio River Watershed Celebration set for September 15 in Pittsburgh, reserve your spot now online.

* EPA: Farmers In PA Need To Comply With Federal Clean Water Rules

* REAP Farm Conservation Tax Credit Apps Accepted Starting August 2

* State Conservation Commission, Districts Recognize Excellence In Protecting PA's Resources

* Conservation Districts, State Conservation Commission Annual Meeting Presentations

The PA Association of County Conservation Districts has posted the presentations made at the PACD-State Conservation Commission annual meeting online.   The presentations include:

* Allegheny Front: The Future Of Watershed Groups In PA

About a decade ago, watershed groups proliferated in Pennsylvania, thanks to the Growing Greener Program and the infusion of state money. Small groups of volunteers tackled pollution on their local rivers and streams. What they lacked in technical expertise, they made up for in passion. But is it time now for watershed groups to turn pro? Have they reached a watershed moment in their mission?

* Wilkes-Barre Growing Greener Application Meeting July 28

* Legislation Introduced In Congress To Expand Protection For White Clay Creek

* USGS: 36 Counties Now In Drought Watch Condition

The USGS Pennsylvania Water Science Center this week reported 3 more counties are now in drought watch condition using the Palmer Drought Severity Index bringing the total to 36 of Pennsylvania's 67 counties.

* $129 Million Investment In Water Infrastructure Projects Approved In 33 Counties

* Trout Unlimited Stream Surveillance Training For Members In Marcellus Shale Region

* Citizens Clash Over Delaware River Basin Commission On Marcellus Shale Drilling

By Sandy Long, The River Reporter

* DCNR Releases GIS Maps On Impacts Of Leasing Additional State Forest Land For Drilling

The Department of Conservation and Natural Resources this week released a new series of GIS maps showing the potential impacts of leasing additional State Forest land for Marcellus Shale natural gas drilling.

* U.S. House Panel Approves Study Of Fracking Impact On Water Resources In Delaware

* Susquehanna River Basin Commission Hearings Set On Water Withdrawal Rules

* DEP Gives Cabot Oil & Gas More Time To Fix Water Supplies In Susquehanna County

* EQB Holds Last Hearing On Gas Well Casing Rule July 26

* Drilling Industry Calls Pittsburgh City Council Moratorium Resolution Misguided

* Gas Well Fire In Western PA Kills Two Workers, DEP Investigating

A shallow gas well drilled in May 2008 caught fire in a wooded area of Indiana Township, Allegheny County, Friday after an explosion occurred while workers were welding equipment at the well site.

* DEP Launches New Online Newsletter- Marcellus Shale Examiner

The Department of Environmental Protection is launching a new weekly e-newsletter on Marcellus Shale natural gas issues called the Marcellus Shale Examiner. The following is from the sign-up webpage--

* PennDOT Hails Volunteers For Collecting 12 Million Pounds Of Litter

More than 186,000 volunteers cleaned 19,373 miles of roads, trails and shorelines in Pennsylvania during the Great American Cleanup of PA, which ran from March 1 to May 31, PennDOT Secretary Allen D. Biehler, P.E. said.

* August 7 Medication Clean-Up Day Announced For Harrisburg

* DEP Finalizes Agreement To Redevelop Harley Davidson Property In York

* Pennsylvania Joins Other Great Lakes States In Asian Carp Lawsuit

Pennsylvania this week joined the Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio and Wisconsin in a federal lawsuit against the United States Army Corps of Engineers and the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago, seeking immediate action to prevent the spread of Asian Carp into the Great Lakes.

* Ned Smith Center To Be Designated Wild Plant Sanctuary

* Appalachian Trail, Rail Corridors Get Boost From Norfolk Southern Employees

* Feature- Lehigh Valley Sustainable Landscapes Bus Tour A Great Success

By Jessica Sprajcar, Conservation Program Manager, DCNR Office of Conservation Science

* Merged Bedrock, Groundwater Data Now Available From DCNR Bureau Of Topo/Geo

* Gettysburg Museum And Visitor Center Achieves Gold LEED Standard

* Wagner Says PUC Should Enhance Electric Deregulation Education Programs For Consumers

Auditor General Jack Wagner said this week with 60 percent of Pennsylvanians due to have their electricity rates uncapped at the end of this year, the Public Utility Commission, state government and electric utilities should do more to educate consumers about electricity rate increases resulting from the rate-cap expiration.

* Ben Franklin Invests $27 Million To Support Alternative Energy Projects

* Community College Marcellus ShaleNET Receives $4.9M Federal Grant For Worker Training

* DEP Opportunity To Bid On Mine Reclamation Projects In Elk, Lackawanna Counties

The Department of Environmental Protection published notice of opportunities to bid on a mine reclamation project in Elk County and a mine reclamation project in Lackawanna County.

* Environmental Heritage- DCNR At 15: The Tom Ridge Environmental Center At Presque Isle

Unveiled to the public in March 2000, the concept of “The Presque Isle Center” and greenway in Erie was a collaborative effort ending in the dedication of the Tom Ridge Environmental Center on Presque Isle

* Opinion- EPA Hearing On Marcellus Shale Well Fracking Highlights Concerns

By U.S. Senator Bob Casey

* Opinion- Hydraulic Fracturing Is A Safe, Essential Part Of The Responsible Development Of Natural Gas

By Kathryn Klabor, Executive Director, Marcellus Shale Coalition

* Opinion- Fracking Delayed To Ensure Clean Water In The Delaware River Basin

By Carol Collier, Executive Director, Delaware River Basin Commission

* Opinion- A Plan For The Pennsylvania Gas Rush

By Don Welsh, President, Pennsylvania Environmental Council

* Grants & Awards

This section gives you a heads up on upcoming deadlines for awards and grants and other recognition programs. NEW means new from last week.

* Quick Clips

Here's a selection of NewClips on environmental topics from around the state--

* Marcellus Shale NewsClips

* Watershed NewsClips

* Regulations, Technical Guidance & Permits

The Department of Environmental Protection published notice of proposed variance from VOC emission standards for air fresheners.  The Environmental Quality Board published notice of an additional public hearing on proposed oil and gas well casing standards.

* Calendar Of Events

Upcoming legislative meetings, conferences, workshops, plus links to other online calendars. Meetings are in Harrisburg unless otherwise noted.  NEW means new from last week.  Go to the online Calendar webpage.

* Stories Invited

Send your stories, photos and videos about your project, environmental issues or programs for publication in the PA Environment Digest to:

* Supporting Member PA Outdoor Writers Assn./PA Trout Unlimited

PA Environment Digest is a supporting member of the Pennsylvania Outdoor Writers AssociationPennsylvania Council Trout Unlimited and the Doc Fritchey Chapter Trout Unlimited.

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